Phil Ivey secured his first live poker tournament title of 2021 by tearing his way through a stacked final table to emerge victorious in the Super High Roller Bowl Europe $25,000 buy-in short deck event. The 10-time World Series of Poker bracelet winner dominated down the stretch, securing the final four knockouts to lock up the $408,000 first-place prize. The 44-year-old Poker Hall of Fame member increased his career tournament earnings to more than $31.2 million with this win, placing him 12th on poker’s all-time money list.
Prior to this win, Ivey’s last recorded cash in an open event came in March of 2020, when he made four cashes for nearly $1.7 million in the span of a week at the
MILLIONS Super High Roller Sochi, one of the last high roller series to run before the live poker that lasted much of last year. Ivey did have one win since then, in a high-stakes invitational event. He topped a field of 32 entries in a $25,000 heads-up event, defeating fellow high-stakes legend Patrik Antonius in the finals.
In addition to the title and the money, Ivey was also awarded a bevy of rankings points for his victory in this event. He locked up 420 Card Player Player of the Year points, and 245 PokerGO Tour points. This was his first qualified score for either points race. This win alone should be enough to move him within reach of the top 50 on the PokerGO Tour leaderboard.
The final day of this event began with Stephen Chidwick leading the seven remaining players, with Chris Brewer in second chip position and Ivey on the next-largest stack. Erik Seidel, fresh off of securing his ninth WSOP bracelet, finished seventh for $48,000. A player identified only as ‘Santi’ was the next to fall, with his QJ running into the AQ of Chidwick, who flopped trip aces to take a commanding lead. Santi failed to find any help on the turn or river and was eliminated in sixth place ($72,000).
Ivey surged into the lead during five-handed play thanks to a double-up with pocket aces. Ivey’s hand held up against the AQ of Brewer, who fell to the bottom of the chip counts. Brewer got all-in not long after that with A9, but was unable to outrun Ivey’s QQ. Brewer earned $96,000 for his 12th POY-qualified final-table finish of 2021. The score helped him move inside the top 20 in the POY race. He also secured 58 PokerGO Tour points. He remains in ninth place on that leaderboard.
Ihor Shkliaruk’s run in this event came to an end when his AQ clashed with the AK of Ivey, who made kings and nines to win the pot. Shkliaruk earned $132,000 for his fourth-place showing, while Ivey further extended his rapidly growing lead.
Mikita Badziakouski was the clear short stack when three-handed play began. The Belarusian high-stakes crusher managed a few double-ups to keep his hopes alive for a bit, but ultimately was knocked out in third place when his AK lost out to the 98 of Ivey. The board came down 98610A to give Ivey a winning two pair. Badziakouski was awarded $180,000 as the third-place finisher, increasing his lifetime earnings to $30,904,190. As a result, he now sits in 12th place (just one spot behind Ivey) on the all-time money list.
Ivey took more than a 3.5:1 lead into heads-up play with Chidwick, having busted the last three players to set up the final showdown for the title. Chidwick had not made up much ground by the time the final hand was dealt. Ivey open shoved from the button with K10 and Chidwick called with AQ. The K9810A runout gave Ivey kings and tens for the win. Chidwick earned $264,000 as the runner-up. With $36,372,732 in career scores to his name, the 2019 Card Player Player of the Year award winner currently sits in seventh place on the all-time money list.
Here is a look at the payouts and rankings points awarded in this event:
Winner photo credit: @meritpokercyprus on Instagram.